Finding a Writing Mentor For Your YA Novel - Uncharted

Finding a Writing Mentor For Your YA Novel

By Riv Begun

Mentors provide wisdom, support, critique and feedback at any stage of your career. Through one on one meetings on a regular basis, mentees grow in their field and their craft.

Sometimes it’s hard to find the right mentor. Being a mentor is a time commitment, and finding one that’s right for you can be a challenge. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of resources for finding the right mentor, and hopefully landing on one that will stick with you.

Apply for a program like Pitchwars, WriteMentor, or Author Mentor Match

There are many different types of mentorship programs, some with fees and others without. Jane Friedman has compiled a comprehensive list of mentorship programs here.

A lot of these mentorship programs are about what you take out of them. If you’re lucky, your relationship with your mentor will continue beyond the program. Even if that doesn’t happen, Pitchwars and similar programs have forums and communities, great places to find a mentor.

Join a writing community

Whether online or in-person, writing communities are great resources to find mentors. Ask in a writing Facebook group to talk to a more experienced writer. If you’re in a writing group and there’s someone there you admire, ask if the two of you can get coffee.

Ask around your community if anyone knows other writers

Somebody always knows somebody, and sometimes all it takes is for you to tell someone you meet what you’re interested in for them to point you to the right person.

Let your network know you’re looking for a writing mentor. You may be surprised by their response.

Research your local university

Reach out to the writing faculty at a university and see if they know someone who would be a good fit for you. Go to events at the school and see who you meet. Visit events with writers that you respect and work up the courage to talk to them.

Reach out to writers you like

If you read a great story in a literary magazine, reach out to the writer. They’ll most likely be flattered you liked their story enough to write to them, and they might even be interested in meeting to talk.

Take classes in person

Classes are a great way to find mentors. Find a local writing workshop in your city or take classes at the local community college. You might find the professor open to mentoring their students.

Finding a good mentor can be difficult, and sometimes the only thing stopping us from matching with one is our fear of asking.
Don’t let your fear stop you from finding the right person to support you in your goals, and maybe one day, when someone else is looking for mentors, you will have the opportunity to do the same for them.

Good luck and happy writing!

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